Practicum Education Faculty - University of Houston
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Practicum Education Faculty

Practicum Education Staff Title & Biography/Personal State

Jamie Parker, LMSW | (she/her)



GCSW 207

Director of Practicum Education

Jamie Parker received her Master of Social Work degree from the University Of Houston’s Graduate College of Social Work in 2006 with a concentration in Political Social Work.  She became a clinical assistant professor, and the Director of Practicum Education in 2014, after working in the College for 7 years. Jamie was selected to serve on the National Council of Social Work Education, Council on Field Education and is a leader with the Texas Field Educators Consortium. Jamie shares she has a passion for nonviolent social action and macro level social work, and appreciates being a small part of guiding student’s social work educational journey.

Shelley Gonzales, LCSW | (she/her)


GCSW 205


Assistant Director of Practicum Education

Shelley Gonzales received her Master of Social Work degree from the University of Houston’s Graduate College of Social Work in 2008 and joined the Practicum Team Spring 2018. Shelley has accrued 10 years in a community nonprofit as a field instructor and executive director working with adolescents on the transition to adulthood, leadership development, and experiential education. A few of the things she loves most about social work is the adventure of working with humanity at a very core level, the opportunities for her own growth, and the breadth and depth of the roles that social workers can fill.

Cindy Carter, LCSW-S | (she/her)



GCSW 203

Clinical Assistant Professor

Cindy Carter received her Bachelors in Psychology from Florida State University and went on to earn her Masters in Social Work from The University of Texas at Austin. Prior to joining the GCSW faculty in 2021, Cindy worked as a clinical practitioner whose primary focus was on treating children, adolescents and families. Cindy has specialized clinical training in open adoption, somatoform disorders, pediatric chronic illness and Borderline Personality disorder. Cindy was most recently the Lead Clinician for an innovative therapeutic day treatment program for children and adolescents with chronic medical illness and co-occurring mental health diagnoses; a program she helped to launch in 2016. She provided individual, family and group therapy; as well as serving as the program’s grant manager. Additionally, Cindy supports future clinicians as a board-certified clinical supervisor. Cindy is passionate about collaborating alongside the GCSW Practicum Education team as they work together to reimagine the practicum experience. She desires to create spaces for students to learn how to approach their placement experience with humility and curiosity, as well as, with a critical lens focused towards social justice and equity. She is eager to engage in the work of dismantling oppressive barriers that have far too long limited access to the social work profession.

In her free time, Cindy is an avid reader and the founder of a local book club. She lives in Houston with her husband and 7-year-old bonus son.

Charday Foster, LMSW | (she/her)


GCSW 207

Clinical Assistant Professor 

Charday is originally from the San Francisco Bay Area (CA) with family roots grounded in the Trinity Gardens and Fifth Ward areas of Houston. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Riverside in Psychology, and earned her MSW degree from the University of Southern California. Charday’s professional background has been shaped by positions held in both California and Texas, and include roles in child welfare, medical and educational settings. Most recently, Charday served in a macro-level position with a large, Texas-based charter school system. As a member of the GCSW Practicum Education team, she will primarily serve as a Practicum Faculty Liaison for macro agency settings and instruct macro-focused courses. Charday is enthusiastic about helping our students navigate their practicum education experiences and delivering effective classroom instruction that will positively contribute to the development of our future social work leaders. Charday is passionate about finding working solutions aimed to dismantle oppressive systems that have historically prevented equitable access to resources and opportunities.


Yvonne Mendoza, LMSW | (she/her)



GCSW 204

Clinical Assistant Professor

I am a Latina bilingual licensed social worker with 10 years of experience working with children and families who have experienced multiple levels of trauma. My work has been in creating culturally and linguistically trauma-informed programming for various settings including HISD urban city schools and Houston – based mental health organizations. Prior to joining the GCSW, I worked for Kids in Need of Defense, as Regional Director for Social Services (West) and the Trauma and Grief Center at Texas Children’s Hospital. Through various agencies, I have worked to create, develop, and implement mental health programming to primarily treat unaccompanied youth and immigrant children in Houston, TX. I look forward to working alongside the practicum team to re-envision field practicum experience.

Tamika White, LMSW | (she/her)



GCSW 204

Clinical Assistant Professor

Tamika White received her BA in Sociology/Social Work from Dillard University-New Orleans in 2007. Tamika received her MSW in Interpersonal Practice with Children, Youth and Families with a school certification in 2008 at University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. Tamika is currently the Hybrid/Online Field Coordinator at GCSW (starting July 2020) and a PRN Social Worker for The Woman’s Hospital of Texas. She has worked as a Housing Plus Case Manager with SEARCH Homeless Services (The Open Door Mission/Jackson Hinds Gardens), a medical social worker and preceptor at Texas Children’s Hospital,  a Victim Assistant Specialist at The Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences and a medical social worker for Shriners Hospitals for Children Houston. Tamika is passionate about students increasing their self-awareness and maximizing their full potential.  She loves that the practicum experience gives the students an opportunity to apply practical skills to social issues while establishing their professional identity.